Zeme languages

Linguistic classification:


  • Zeme
Glottolog: zeme1241[1]

The Zeme languages are a small family of Sino-Tibetan languages spoken mostly in northwestern Manipur state of northeast India. Conventionally classified as "Naga", they are not clearly related to other Naga languages, and are conservatively classified as an independent branch of Sino-Tibetan, pending further research.

The Zeme languages are the Zeme cluster (Zeme proper, aka Empeo; Liangmai (Kwoireng), and Rongmai, aka Kabui or Nruanghmei), which are close enough to sometimes be considered dialects of a single Zeliang language; plus Mzieme, Puiron, Khoirao, and Maram.

Van Driem (2011) lists the varieties, from south to north, as:

Mzieme, Khoirao, Maram, Puiron, Zeme (AKA Empeo Naga, Kacha Naga, Kochu Naga), Nruanghmei (AKA Rongmai, Kabui), Liangmai (AKA Kwoireng)

(Inpui and Puimei, which are sometimes listed, are not distinct.)[1]


  1. 1 2 Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Zemeic". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  • George van Driem (2001) Languages of the Himalayas: An Ethnolinguistic Handbook of the Greater Himalayan Region. Brill.

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